You probably have heard the term web tracking before. Even if you haven’t, you must know that web tracking is a part of digital marketing and collects user data. Each website you visit has its web tracker. It helps the website collect information about your preferences and how you interact with them. With this information, the website owner enhances their service and user experience to grow.
According to a survey conducted in 2017, it has been found that about 79 % of websites practice tracking to collect user data. But the process is not completely wrong as we wouldn’t have seen different brands providing such good products or services to us if web tracking was not done. There are two types of trackers - the first-party tracker and the third-party tracker. The first-party tracker has good intentions among these two, and the second has terrible intentions while stalking you.
This third-party app takes away your information and can use it for the wrong purpose. If you want to avoid such an experience, go through this article. We have jotted down everything about web tracking, how it works, different types of web trackers, and how you can avoid getting stalked. So, scroll through and learn it all to keep your privacy safe.
How does Web Tracker Work?
When you visit the internet, your mobile leaves some of the data records of you visiting the websites. Your every click leaves some trace on the website you have seen on the Internet. Website trackers use a tiny bit of information, some invisible objects, or configuration details of your hardware and account to collect the data.
Websites collect lots of different information for various purposes. This data is collected from other forms such as emails, credit card information, and various information gathered with the help of tracking technology.
Here are some of the data points through which data is collected:
- IP addresses are used to identify the location of the user.
- Data is based on how the user interacts with the websites.
- Browsing history is a point that provides information on the user's preferences.
At the same time, some websites need more information. The website's data collection depends on how the site is monetized and what kind of service is provided by the website.
Is Web Tracking Bad?
We must remember that there are always two sides to the coin. One is the good one, and the other is bad. Not all web trackers are malicious. Everything is ok, but concerns arise when the third-party websites start tracking.
Why do the Web Trackers Track Users?
The main reason behind web tracking is to draw proper perspectives about the customer on the sites to provide a better personalized online User experience. The website aims to achieve monetization by showing targeted advertisements to customers. Here are some of the reasons for web tracking.
1. Website Performance
You may find that many websites function only work properly with proper tracking. For example, one of the website performance functions is to keep the user logged into their sites while visiting the different pages, which means the user will return to the page from where they started.
Some functions would only work with the proper web tracker. For example, suppose you have logged into YouTube, and the algorithm calculates your preference and recommends your next video, which may excite you.
2. Website Analytics
Another common reason for web tracking is using the user's data for analytical purposes. You must have heard the name of the most famous analytical tool! Google Analytics is the best-known standard website analytics. It is a web tracker that tracks users through more than 29 million sites for analytical purposes.
Generally, websites use analytical software to acquire more information about their customers. This analytical software can profuse how the users interact on the site and the demographic of the visitor to the website.
With the help of the information, most website owners make decisions for the website and enhance the website's user experience.
Retargeting is a common practice. The website owner conducts the website tracking to achieve the user's data to share them with some of the best-targeted advertising. Web tracker tracks the user's preference, and according to the user's choice, the service provides the ad to the user.
The advertisement is also shared according to the data collected from the user's location, browsing history, interest, and most visited website.
Types of Web Trackers
There is a different way that the web Tracker follows to track the users' data. Get yourself enlightened with varying types of web trackers present in your device, through which the website users gain your information. Getting acknowledged with varying trackers of the web will help you get rid of the third-party web tracker.
Cookies are one of the most common ways to track the browser's search history. You may have an idea or may need a complete view of cookies. A cookie is a minor bit of data saved in your browser while using the Internet. Whenever you visit a website, cookies of the particular website are saved on your device. But not all cookies are created equally.
Generally, the site you visit may have its cookies referred to as first-party cookies. These cookies are set to recommend content that is typically suitable for you and assist you with recollecting your log-ins and then some.
A supercookie is a programming cookie that can be forever put away on your PC. Supercookies are more diligent in distinguishing and disposing of because they can't be auto-erased on a similar path as ordinary cookies.
By infusing supercookies into your gadget, sites can access your data, conduct, and inclinations. Supercookies can likewise follow the time you're generally active on the web. This vital information is a goldmine for website owners who can utilize the data to enhance advertisements dependent on client profiling and inclinations.
Fingerprinting scripts scratch information from your internet browser. You can see all the applications you've downloaded on your gadget by incorporating your program's forms and sort, your gadget's working framework and version, the Resolution of your screen, and introduced text styles.
This information is gathered into a finger impression remarkable to your gadget and can be utilized to follow you across sites remarkably.
How to Track the Trackers?
There is some software available on the Internet that can help you to track the website tracker. This tool is quite helpful in determining the third-party web tracker. In addition, these tools have the incorporated privacy browser extension, which can assist you in finding which party app is tracking your online presence.
When you start using this tool and browse websites, the privacy browser extension develops a visualization of all the third-party web trackers constantly stalking you and your web browsing.
The extension can help you to check which third-party app is active and try to stalk the user. The perception develops with each site you visit and each solicitation produced using your program.
How to stop Web Trackers?
The Ugly Truth of web tracking is that it is impossible to avoid tracking until and unless you stop using the Internet. Whatever process you choose to avoid being tracked-- you can hide your Ip address or anonymize your internet connection. Still, the website you are visiting will make a user profile. And you will need to have accurate information about that.
The most complex deanonymisation techniques, like fingerprinting, can construct and connect clients' profiles, paying little heed to their actions. Notwithstanding, there are various things you can do that will improve your protection and security and make it a lot harder for anybody to follow you on the web.
Delete Your Cookies
Cookies are helpful, yet there is a security hazard, and they can be utilized to follow your online exercises. Using a cookie to keep you signed in to Facebook resembles leaving your front entryway open, so you can save time placing your key in and opening the entryway. It saves time and is more straightforward and advantageous, yet it leaves you uncovered regarding your network safety and protection.
You can physically clear your cookies from your internet browser, check your program's protection and security settings and search for the alternative to remove or erase your cookies. Likewise, you can set your schedule to erase cookies naturally or not save them by any stretch of the imagination.
Don't Log in to Social Media
The idea of web-based media, alongside numerous other online administrations, implies that sites should have the option to follow clients and bind records to unique individuals. If you need to keep up with namelessness on the web, you need to try not to sign in to any help that can distinguish you.
Joining any web-based media stage implies surrendering your online obscurity somewhat. If you should have online media accounts, you should sign in to them and use an alternate program for your mysterious web perusing.
Likewise, you ought to check the accessible protection settings that every stage offers, and many will empower you to quit a portion of the following.
Use a VPN
Utilizing either an intermediary or a VPN administration will empower you to associate with the web using another worker. This delegate worker will collaborate with the site for your benefit and will keep your actual IP address covered up.
Not exclusively will this make it significantly harder to follow you; however, but it likewise empowers you to interface with a site from any place on the planet. You will have a UK IP address if you associate utilizing a worker in the UK.
Mask Your Browser Signature
You probably won't understand it. However, a wide range of data about your program is shipped off any site you visit. This incorporates a client specialist string, which mentions what program and working framework you are utilizing. Locales utilize this data to follow you.
Various program augmentations are accessible that empower the client to switch their client specialist string on the fly. Changing your client specialist string as you surf the web will make it substantially harder to follow you.
So, we have successfully come to the end of the article. Hopefully, you have got enough information regarding the web tracker. The Internet has given us lots of things. But with great power comes enormous responsibilities. With the advancement of the Internet, we have got plenty of options that have made our life simple and easy.
However, there is software available that can help you to identify the hidden trackers. The Ugly Truth of web tracking is that it is impossible to avoid tracking until and unless you stop using the internet. Fortunately, the ways we’ve mentioned here will keep you safe from harmful ones. Follow all these processes and try to use a VPN whenever you’re browsing the internet.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What do internet trackers do?
Trackers keep track of the websites you visit, how long you stay on each, and the products you buy.
2. How do I stop trackers from profiling me?
- Use tracker blockers
- Use a private search engine
- Use VPN Surf
3. What does it mean when websites Contact trackers?
Websites primarily monitor users to learn more about how their visitors interact with the site, customize the user's online experience, and monetize the user by displaying relevant advertisements.
4. Is Internet tracking illegal?
Although the Federal Trade Commission's Behavioral Advertising Principles encourage that websites explain their data-gathering practices that are used to develop targeted marketing, there is no particular consumer tracking regulation at the federal level.
5. Is someone watching my internet activity?
Internet service providers (ISPs) have access to your online activity. They can keep tabs on things like the websites you visit, how long you spend there, what you view, what device you're using, and where you are in the world.
6. Should I delete trackers?
Your internet privacy and the amount of storage space these kinds of data might use up on your hard disk are your two primary worries with trackers. In either case, cleaning them out once a week using CCleaner is OK, especially after doing data-sensitive online operations like banking, etc.
Do you value your privacy online?
Use VPN Surf and surf safely and securely in the open waters of the internet.